An epistemology for practical knowledge

Canadian Journal of Philosophy 48 (2):159-177 (2018)
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Anscombe thought that practical knowledge – a person’s knowledge of what she is intentionally doing – displays formal differences to ordinary empirical, or ‘speculative’, knowledge. I suggest these differences rest on the fact that practical knowledge involves intention analogously to how speculative knowledge involves belief. But this claim conflicts with the standard conception of knowledge, according to which knowledge is an inherently belief-involving phenomenon. Building on John Hyman’s account of knowledge as the ability to use a fact as a reason, I develop an alternative, two-tier, epistemology which allows that knowledge might really come in a belief-involving and an intention-involving form.



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Lucy Campbell
University of Warwick

Citations of this work

Knowledge, practical knowledge, and intentional action.Joshua Shepherd & J. Adam Carter - 2023 - Ergo: An Open Access Journal of Philosophy 9:556-583.
Mental action.Antonia Peacocke - 2021 - Philosophy Compass 16 (6):e12741.
Intention.Kieran Setiya - 2009 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
A metaphysics for practical knowledge.Kim Frost - 2019 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 49 (3):314-340.

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References found in this work

Knowledge and its limits.Timothy Williamson - 2000 - New York: Oxford University Press.
Intention.G. E. M. Anscombe - 1957 - Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press.
No Work for a Theory of Grounding.Jessica M. Wilson - 2014 - Inquiry: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Philosophy 57 (5-6):535-579.
Knowledge and Its Limits.Timothy Williamson - 2000 - Philosophy 76 (297):460-464.
Metaphysical grounding.Ricki Bliss & Kelly Trogdon - 2021 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.

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